How to Take Good Shots of Landscapes
Many of the best photographs taken by professionals are of landscapes and scenic expanses of rolling plains or magnificent mountains. However, a major problem of many landscape captures is they usually don’t look as captivating as the real scenes do. The quality of landscape photos distinguish between a professional, seasoned photographer and an amateur. There is a concern regarding the vastness of scene—the detail that should be captured. Details are significant because they tell whether you’re photo is a nice capture or not.
Making good photographs is as not as easy as it seems but these ideas should be able to help you.
What equipment to bring
Quality lenses – Digital SLR cameras are often used for landscape photography, and these cameras use a set of different lenses unlike compact cameras. It’s wise to invest in premium lenses, which do not cause aberration. For landscapes, you should be opting for wide angle lenses.
Tripod – Nice tripods remain still even against strong winds and should have adjustable legs. A tripod is indispensable equipment for a fine shot of a scenery.
Filters – You can use these to come up with photographs with high image quality with vivid colors and well balanced brightness. While these aspects can be enhanced with software like Photoshop, filters ensure that images are of superior quality from the start.
Shutter release cable – This is not the most essential thing you might add in your backpack but comes handy when you’re too worried about the camera shake you’d make with every nudge of the shutter button. The simpler alternative is to use the self-timer option although this is not too reliable with moving subjects.
Durable camera bag – You most probably should buy a quality bag for your photography equipment. Landscape photography could mean you would be carrying loads of gadgets and gears. Backpack style carrying bag would suit you best for long hikes while you find a good spot.
Landscape Photography Tips
1. Watch the sky – It’s a significant element in your landscape pictures. You can have a photo that is dominated by the sky or the foreground depending on which of the two has a more arresting appearance. You may want to catch a picturesque weather drama or interesting cloud formations in the sky on a still that becomes a sky-dominated photograph. You may enhance the sky-foreground color balance by using polarizing filters.
2. Angle of the sun in the sky – The most captivating photographs of landscapes are done early in the morning or late in the afternoon when the low sun rays create a dramatic effect on the landscape and highlight features and terrain.
3. Exploit the weather – One of the most amazing landscape photography techniques in making breathtaking landscape pictures is to consider the weather, which can change the mood of a scene. You may be given to taking pictures on sunny days but watch out for gloomy days with ominous cloud patterns for they can create a picturesque spectacular effect on a landscape. Sometimes, storms, billowing clouds, dark skies, fog, and gusts can create awe-inspiring photographs.
4. Where is your horizon – When taking photos of landscapes, you inevitably would have to figure out where to position your horizon. As implied earlier, horizons in pictures can be at the bottom or top third of the photo—depending on whichever draws more attention, the sky or the foreground. But this rule of thirds can sometimes be broken. Ideally, horizons should be seen on a horizontal stretch across the photograph.
5. Work with lines – Lines can help add details, perspective, and a sense of depth in your photos. Lines needn’t be real lines but hedges, row of trees, or any linear element.
There are a lot more tips out there and you’ll discover them as you get to add more techniques to what you already have. In fact, you’ll make your own unique approaches as you become a seasoned image capturing artist.
by Roy Barker